Honored Kid

Mina S.

Age 38
Mina S. Kid Photo


Fairmont, WV, US



Date of Diagnosis

June 2011



Treated At

West Virginia University Children's Hospital MU Women's and Children's Hospital

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My Story

In April 2011 I was busy studying for my comprehensive exams for my Masters degree when I began feeling some pain in my right knee.  My doctor diagnosed it as a sprain, and ordered ice and rest.  A month later I was preparing to leave home for summer work on a ranch in Montana. The swelling and pain had not subsided, so I thought I ought to get a second opinion before heading to such a secluded place. My MRI showed a tumor on my distal femur. A biopsy confirmed osteosarcoma.  I began chemotherapy right away in June 2011.  My knee replacement and resection happened September 22, and was followed by 8 more months of chemo. Update: It has now been almost a year, and I am nearly done with treatments. I've learned a lot about what it means to be alive. It's quite scary how fast one can become accustomed to the "cancer" way of life. I try to keep as much normalcy as I can, though this illness did catch me between school and work. While I started out with 2 degrees in French, I am now thinking of going back to school for physical therapy. It has been the most enjoyable part of this journey for me. The struggle and the joy it brings to peoples lives is amazing to see and feel. Hopefully one day I'll get back on a treadmill and run, and if I'm lucky, I'll get back on skates and knock some people down in a hockey game or two. Small steps for now. Taking life one day at a time. UPDATE- 4/13/2015 While I'm not back on the treadmill (at the request of my orthopedist), I have gotten on ice skates.  I am coming up on my 3 year "anniversary" of completion of treatment, though it feels like it's been ages.  I'm working full time, and slowly chipping away at the prerequisites for PT school (I wish I'd taken more science in college!).  I've learned about a couple side effects of my treatment, but they are manageable so far.  My knee makes me a little slower than my peers, but I'm trying not to let that get me down.  I'm alive, I'm pretty darn healthy, I am able to work, and have become an enthusiastic advocate for cancer research.  No regrets.

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